mySociety have issued two fab reports on some of their more popular public engagement websites. Tobias Escher has been thorough – I’m pleased he mentioned the Office of the (then) Deputy Prime Minister‟s e-innovations seed fund (£196,000) to develop a number of projects including WriteToThem. I also think the number of unique visitors across all sites and the 60% responsiveness from WriteToThem is respectful.
As a report it is no doubt useful for mySoc, it’s the kind of guff that they need to know about the market, share and audience. However, it doesn’t really talk about impact – what are the societal benefits? In a recent approach to evaluation of the European eParticipation projects I used a Political, Economic, Social, Technological (PEST) approach, maybe this is something that can be applied next time?
While I can only but congratulate mySoc on what they have achieved I worry that being first to market isn’t always a good thing (just look at who is programming the new national ePetition facility!). They also have to be careful about their Local Authority interface – in other words, working with government instead of being disruptive.
Actually, all I want is for Tom to give me a job 🙂